If we look at the past three decades in the history of Eastern Europe, Ukraine may safely be placed at the top of the chart of “unstable” states. First was the student-led Revolution on Granite in the 1990s. The outcome of that revolution was a resignation of entrenched high-ranked Soviet officials under the pressure of public opinion. Then, if we skip the 1999 anti-Kuchma protests, the next big upheaval was the Orange Revolution in 2003–04. It led to a rerun of the presidential election and eventual reboot of the government. Finally, the massive and blood-soaked EuroMaidan, or Revolution of Dignity, happened in 2013–14—which, once again, led to a drastic change in Ukraine’s ruling elites. All three revolutions were of unprecedented regional magnitude and became a factor in the foreign policy of the EU, Russia, and the US.
This monograph explores the ambivalent position of Artigas in the political-cultural debate of the Cold War, during the 1950s, when two principal art movements were opposed. On one side, socialist realist tendencies that emerged in post-revolutionary Russia, particularly after the ascension of Stalin, who intended it to be the new art of the proletarian masses, along the lines of culturalpolicies shared by many communist parties. On another side, concretism, already held as a new avant-garde art of geometrical abstraction, attacked by communist militants for its supposed “imperialist” links. To carry out this exploration, we have mapped the architect’s treatment of both currents from two simultaneous fonts. One refers to the writings and classes of Artigas, where it is possible to trace the changes in meaning that each movement underwent throughout his career. The other refers to his projects, where we studied two paradigmatical houses: the Olga Baeta, of 1956; and the Rubens de Mendonça, of 1958. Although the former is usually regarded as “socialist realist” and the latter as “concretist”, analysis of the drawings do not permit any narrow bonds to any of them. Both positions are mixed together in both houses, revealing the cultural impasse in which Artigas was set, present in both the texts and buildings, not only regarding the formal development assigned to each of them, but the link between long-term national and political projects.
Ukraine’s current fight against Russian aggression carries deep historic resonances which we ignore at our peril.
Post-communist Ukraine is in the midst of implementing reforms which it missed for centuries. It gradually evolves into a unique geopolitical entity which, finally, acquires a fair chance to be consistent and self-sufficient. However, if the West takes a neutral stance today – as it frequently happened in history – a “decentralized” Ukraine will fall again under the centralized Russian assault.
The article focuses on the Ukrainian geopolitical presence in the Black Sea littoral tracing its development since the beginning of the twentieth century. An attempt is made to predict the future regional policies of Ukraine taking into account ongoing irreversible processes: the recent Ukrainian democratic revolution, early presidential elections of 2014, growing Russian confrontation with the Western states, ongoing insurgency in the Eastern Ukraine, promising cooperation with Turkey and others. Apart from this, the outlines are drafted for Ukraine to fully benefit from the available political and economic options in the current discourse. Finally, the article includes arguments for the EU, U.S. and NATO to revise their modus operandi in the Black Sea littoral and make a stake on Ukraine as on the champion of the liberal values and democracy.
The article outlines the geopolitical rationale behind contemporary Russian expansionism, as well as presents the asymmetric and “hybrid” mechanisms utilized by the Kremlin to solidify its authority in the post-communist space. To do this, the article refers to the findings of American, British, Polish and Ukrainian intellectuals on the nature of the Russian political identity. The four commonly used theoretical frameworks explaining contemporary Russian expansionism are described and critically assessed (imperial, diversionary, divergent identities and “angry guy”). Apart from this, the Russian and foreign political philosophic thought of the XIX-XXI centuries is referred to. The latter was done to trace the evolution of the Russian Byzantium-type governing tradition and national identity. The article puts forward the hypothesis that Russian expansionism, alongside the Russian sentiment towards an imperialist worldview, are tested by historical patterns of national policy-making which bring the state to its civilizational glory. In this light, it will be futile to expect that Russia can fully democratize, build a Western type of a nation-state and start conducting open policies.
This book highlights the quantitative methods of data mining and information visualization and explores their use in relation to the films and writings of the Russian director, Dziga Vertov. The theoretical basis of the work harkens back to the time when a group of Russian artists and scholars, known as the “formalists,” developed new concepts of how art could be studied and measured. This book brings those ideas to the digital age. One of the central questions the book intends to address is, “How can hypothetical notions in film studies be supported or falsified using empirical data and statistical tools?” The first stage involves manual and computer-assisted annotation of the films, leading to the production of empirical data which is then used for statistical analysis but more importantly for the development of visualizations. Studies of this type furthermore shed light on the field of visual presentation of time-based processes; an area which has its origin in the Russian formalist sphere of the 1920s and which has recently gained new relevance due to technological advances and new possibilities for computer-assisted analysis of large and complex data sets. In order to reach a profound understanding of Vertov and his films, the manual or computer-assisted data analysis must be combined with film-historical knowledge and a study of primary sources. In addition, the status of the surviving film materials and the precise analysis of these materials combined with knowledge of historical film technology provide insight into archival policy and political culture in the Soviet Union in the 1920s and 30s.
The annexation of Crimea is not an ordinary event in contemporary international relations. Since WWII, there has been no precedent in Europe when one state under dubious premises has forcefully annexed a part of another state. This article scrutinizes the Crimean case in the context of the ongoing Ukrainian crisis and uncovers the rationale behind Russia’s aggressive policies in the Black Sea region. To accomplish this task, several steps have been undertaken. Primarily, the recent speeches of Russian officials and Kremlin-originated documents have been analyzed. Secondly, the tactics favored by the Kremlin to achieve its geopolitical goals have been explained and assessed (through applying frameworks of meta-geography and soft power security). Thirdly, the future prospects for Crimea with its gradual transformation in the counter-NATO fortress have been outlined.
The article aims to uncover the nature and distinctive features of the contemporary messianic narrations in the Russian public discourse, as well as estimate their impact on the actual policy-making. For this reason, the article scrutinizes the political philosophy of Aleksandr Dugin, Nataliia Narochnitskaia, Egor Kholmogorov, and Vadim Tsymburskii. Their major messages are contrasted and compared to a variety of recent developments in Russia’s domestic and foreign policies. The hypothesis is put forward that the messianic narrations are furtive, though unalienable factors which propel and justify Russian domestic and foreign policies. Therefore, it is always worth considering Russian policy-making through the prism of the nation-wide religious self-identification, as well as acknowledging a number of ‘eschatological duties’ which derive from this self-identification. Finally, the article provides an overview to the Western scholarly perspectives on Russian messianism with a specific emphasis on British and US contributors.
The article deals with the different images and perceptions leading figures of the Nazi regime made themselves of Russia, and with their political consequences. A special focus lies on those of Adolf Hitler, Jospeh Goebbels, and Alfred Rosenberg.